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#411- The Naked Spur

Quick recap: Howard Kemp hunts for a man who killed a deputy in Kansas. Along the way he makes an alliance with an old grizzled miner and a creepy guy who was dishonorably discharged from the Army.

Fun (?) fact: The Naked Spur supposedly takes place in 1868, yet the jacket James Stewart wears wasn’t available until 1935. I really hope someone got fired for that blunder!

Also starring Janet Leigh, pictured here with her love interest/father figure , Ben.

Thoughts and observations:

  • To start with a positive, I think I’ve finally learned to tell James Stewart and Gary Cooper apart. Progress!
  • How to tell this western apart from the others I’ve watched so far? That’s more of a struggle.
  • I thought the psychological elements were entertaining, the scenes where the bad guy Ben tries to separate 3 the three men by appealing to their vices. But I also feel like that’s been done so many times in so many ways by now and this movie wasn’t the first to start the trend.
  • This is also one of those movies where I severely disliked everyone for various reasons. James Stewart’s ‘righteous anger’ schtick gets old fast and by the end I was just hoping that he would take Ben’s body (oops. SPOILER) and leave Lina stranded. Anything but the formulaic ending where he falls in love and gets married.
  • The scenery for the film was gorgeous and the score added a nice touch to an otherwise ho-hum movie.

Watchability score: 3/5

Up next: The Producers

 

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